Opening up the world for a new generation of rural South Africans
In 2005 Kate Groch and I built a preschool in the remote South African town of Philippolis, with nothing more than a building manual, a faulty water pipe and a small beat-up car.
As we arrived at the building site on day one, I turned to my former teacher and said “Great Kate, so where’s the team?” And I’ll never forget her reply: “We’re it, Boyd.”
We have come a long way since building that first preschool. Kate founded the Good Work Foundation, its mission to revolutionize education in rural South Africa. Since then, thousands of individuals from around the world have rallied a tribe that is supporting the cause. Good Work Foundation has leap-frogged tradition, focusing on digital, English, environmental and creative literacy. The GWF is bringing innovative technology and curricula, from mobile inquiry-based learning environments, to digital whiteboards and Math on iPads, to underserved schools.
The foundation has set up six digital learning campuses and helps over seven thousand of rural learners per week to become digitally literate, from toddlers all the way up to grandparents. Kate and I are at our most proud when we see a “Gogo” (the Zulu word for grandmother) and her grandchild in the same class, both learning to plug into the world on Google.
Good Work Foundation believes in a future where rural African people are confident participants of the fourth industrial revolution. They are agents of change seamlessly plugged in to local communities and global networks. Together with those who are reimagining education with us, GWF will continue to create innovative digital learning campuses, responsive programs and demand-led social enterprises, all working together to create an accessible, opportunity-packed world for our next generation of rural Africans.
Our goal is for each regional cluster of campuses to deliver wonder-filled 21st century learning opportunities to rural and marginalized communities. Each cluster will be 80% self-funded, 100% community-powered and 75% women-led.
The world is changing fast and the future will not exclude us. In fact, the future needs us.
I would urge you to visit the Good Work Foundation website, join the tribe and find a way to contribute to this incredible organisation which is impacting the lives of over 26500 rural school children every single year.